Student finds new career path at GRCC



Leah Nixon

Director of Communications

(616) 234-4213

April 18, 2016 GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — A woman returning to the classroom after three decades found a new career path and rekindled confidence at Grand Rapids Community College.

Yvonne Miller started at GRCC at the very beginning with developmental courses and was nervous about how she would fare as an older student. She credits Lynnae Selberg, director of GRCC's Counseling and Career Center with building her confidence.

"When Yvonne began at GRCC, she knew an education could help her change the course of her life, but she didn't believe she could do it," Selberg said. "She had it within herself -- she just needed someone to remind her of that once in a while. That is part of our role as counselors and advisers: to see the potential in students and help them find it in themselves."

Miller, who has worked full time while attending college, has been on the Dean's List since starting at GRCC and is now part of the Honors Program. The Honors Program offered her a unique opportunity: She won an essay contest and got to have dinner with former President Carter when he spoke at GRCC in 2014.

She earned her Addiction Studies Certificate in fall 2014 and will receive her associate degree at commencement, which takes place at 7 p.m. April 29 at the Van Andel Arena, 130 Fulton St. W. She plans to transfer to Grand Valley State University, where she will major in psychology. Eventually, she wants to work with families and individuals who have problems with mental illness or substance abuse.

Looking back, Miller calls enrolling at GRCC "one of the best decisions that I have ever made."

"I would like to encourage anyone who wants to return to school, no matter what age they are or how long they have been out of school," she said. "GRCC has courses that will get you back on the path to higher education. The instructors are willing to do all they can to help you with your new learning experience."

Grand Rapids Community College has been offering educational opportunities in West Michigan for 100 years. Established in 1914, the college offers degree courses, certification and training programs, and workshops and personal enrichment classes. Offerings are held on GRCC’s downtown Grand Rapids campus, and at several locations throughout Kent and Ottawa counties, as well as through distance learning.